Triamcinolone Acetonide: Uses, How to Take & Side Effects

Triamcinolone acetonide is a corticosteroid that can be prescribed for the treatment of lesions in the mouth (like canker sores or mouth ulcers), or allergic rhinitis symptoms (like an itchy or runny nose) or joint problems.

This medication can be found in the form of an ointment for application in the mouth, as a nasal spray or as an injectable solution.

Furthermore, triamcinolone acetonide can be found combined with other substances, such as neomycin sulfate, gramicidin and nystatin, to treat inflammations or infections. This medication should be used as prescribed.

Imagem ilustrativa número 1

Common uses

Triamcinolone acetonide is typically prescribed for the treatment of:

  • Canker sores, ulcers or wounds in the oral mucosa, such as cheeks, gums, inner part of the lips and tongue, that are caused by trauma
  • Seasonal allergic rhinitis, to relieve symptoms like a runny nose, plugged nose, intense itching or constant sneezing
  • Inflammation of the uvea of ​​the eye (uveitis), inflammation of the retinal blood vessels, or macular edema
  • Joint inflammation, caused by synovitis, bursitis, epicondylitis, rheumatoid arthritis, acute gout arthritis or post-traumatic osteoarthritis.

Furthermore, triamcinolone acetonide, when combined with other substances, such as neomycin sulfate, gramicidin and nystatin, can be prescribed for the topical treatment of dermatoses, skin inflammations or infections.

Triamcinolone acetonide should always be used as prescribed, in the doses and for the duration advised by the doctor.

How to take

The way to use triamcinolone acetonide varies depending to the condition being treated and the form of this medication, and includes:

1. Triamcinolone acetonide ointment

Triamcinolone acetonide dermatological ointment or cream for is indicated for the treatment or prevention of skin infections, as it contains other substances in its composition, such as neomycin sulfate, gramicidin and nystatin, with anti-inflammatory, antifungal and antibiotic action.

The normally recommended dose for adults is 1 application of the ointment on the affected skin area, 2 to 3 times a day, or as directed by the dermatologist.

2. Injectable triamcinolone

Injectable triamcinolone can be injected directly into the joint or the eye. Administration should be done by an orthopedic surgeon or ophthalmologist.

The dosage of injectable triamcinolone varies according to the condition being treated and the route of administration, which includes:

Route of administration


Intra-articular (triamcinolone hexacetonide)

The dose for adults is 0.1 to 1 mL, injected directly into the joint by the orthopedic surgeon. The amount to be injected varies depending on the size of the joint to be treated.

Injections can be injected every 3 or 4 weeks, as directed by your doctor.

Intraocular (triamcinolone acetonide) The dose for adults is 0.1 mL via the subtenon route or 1 mL via the intravitreal route. It is injected by an ophthalmologist.

The length of treatment and frequency of injectable triamcinolone should always be advised by the doctor.

3. Triamcinolone acetonide nasal spray

Triamcinolone acetonide nasal spray for seasonal allergic rhinitis is recommended for adults or children over 4 years of age. Doses vary according to age, and can include:

  • Adults and children over 12 years of age: the normally recommended initial dose is 2 applications of the nasal spray in each nostril, once a day. After symptoms improve, 1 application of the nasal spray is recommended in each nostril, once a day, or as recommended by a doctor
  • Children aged 4 to 12 years: the normally recommended initial dose is 1 application of the nasal spray in each nostril, once a day, or as directed by a pediatrician

Before using, triamcinolone acetonide nasal spray should first be shaken to mix the formula components. The tip of the applicator must be inserted into the nostril for nasal application. If necessary, you should blow your nose before applying it.

After using triamcinolone acetonide nasal spray, the applicator and protective cap should be cleaned with a tissue or clean cloth. Once a week or if the spray becomes clogged, remove the applicator from the bottle and immerse it in warm water for a few minutes. Then rinse in cold water and let it air dry before putting it back in the bottle.

Also recommended: 5 Allergic Rhinitis Medications Your Doctor Can Prescribe

4. Triamcinolone acetonide orabase ointment

Triamcinolone acetonide orabase ointment is only indicated for adults, and should be used by applying a small amount, directly to the lesion in the mouth, without rubbing, until a thin film forms. To ensure therapeutic effect, the amount used should be just enough to cover the lesion.

The ointment should preferably be applied at night, before going to sleep, so that it exerts its effect throughout the night. Depending on the severity of symptoms, it can be applied 2 to 3 times a day, preferably after meals.

If you do not notice any improvement in symptoms after 7 days os use you should consult your general practitioner or dentist.

This ointment contains 1mg/g of triamcinolone acetonide, and helps to alleviate the symptoms of a cold sore caused by trauma to the oral mucosa. It can be applied to manage pain, discomfort or irritation caused by inflammation in the oral mucosa, as well as reduce itching and local redness.

Possible side effects

The most common side effects of triamcinolone acetonide are a burning sensation, itching, dryness or irritation in the oral, nasal or skin mucosa, headache, pharyngitis, changes in of glucose metabolism, protein breakdown, stomach ulcers, and reduced hormone production by the adrenal glands.

Furthermore, the nasal spray can cause nosebleeds, fever, chills, body pain, blurred vision, eye pain, or seeing halos around lights.

The dermatological ointment or cream can cause side effects like acne, allergic dermatitis, skin atrophy, stretch marks, skin discoloration at the site of application or hair follicle inflammation.

In the case of intra-articular injectable triamcinolone, damage to the joint tissues, joint hardening, osteonecrosis, tendon rupture, abscess or bedsores may occur.

When applied inside the eye, triamcinolone can cause glaucoma, drooping of the upper eyelid, infectious or non-infectious inflammation, retinal detachment, ulcer or vitreous hemorrhage.

Contraindications for use

Triamcinolone acetonide should not be used by people with allergies to any of the components present in the formula.

Furthermore, this medication should not be used by pregnant or breastfeeding women, unless recommended by a doctor, after evaluating the benefits of its use for the woman and potential risks for the baby.

In the form of an oral ointment, triamcinolone acetonide should not be used by children or in cases of fungal, viral or bacterial infections of the mouth or throat, such as herpes or tuberculosis. In the form of a nasal spray, this medication should not be used by children under 4 years of age.

Furthermore, triamcinolone acetonide ointment combined with other substances should not be used on tuberculosis lesions or skin or systemic viral infections, such as chickenpox or herpes simplex. This ointment should also not be applied to the eyes, or in cases of otitis externa with perforation of the eardrum.

Intraocular injections of triamcinolone acetonide are contraindicated for people with systemic infections or allergies to the components of the injection.

Injection into the joint is contraindicated for people with herpetic keratitis, systemic mycoses, active tuberculosis, strongyloidiasis or acute psychosis.